Kochi: Private bus owners in Kochi has sought the help of the state government in rolling out electric vehicles by taking a substantial stake in the proposed ‘Kochi E-bus Ltd’ and readying infrastructure like charging stations.
They would meet principal transport secretary K. R. Jyothilal in the state capital on Wednesday requesting urgent steps so that they can contribute to India's ambitious clean mobility making the country 100 per cent electric vehicle (EV) nation by 2030 in a big way.
“We’ll be seeking 26 per cent (Rs 5.10 crore) stake by the government in the proposed company including representatives of seven registered bus societies,” said K.M. Navas, a designated partner of the Kochi Wheels LLP with nearly 200 buses.
The main objective of ‘Kochi E-Bus Ltd’ will be the introduction of electric buses in the city following the Centre and state policy. The formation of the new company will be on the CIAL model, and the shares issued to the existing bus owners, state government, the public and the NRIs on a percentage basis.
“We’ve already held discussions with vehicle manufacturer Ashok Leyland for the supply of ‘E-buses’ soon. However, the government will have to create infrastructure like adequate charging stations,” Mr Navas said.
Currently, bus owners in Kochi have formed seven companies under the guidance of Kochi Metro Rail Ltd (KMRL), covering nearly 1000 buses plying in the Greater Kochi area.
The process of setting up GPS on the buses is fast progressing. The authorities are introducing electronic ticketing machines and facilitate online fleet management system besides services like live bus tracking facility and onboard passenger Info system.
The Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) is already operating ten e-buses. On the other day, it started the process to acquire another 1,500 buses on a wet lease, 500 each for Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode regions....